To His Arden Lovers in the Land of Tá

In the land of Tá, well known to all, such wonders have transpired.
Great Cyrus was the conqueror and lord of the Near East.
Followed by Darius and the unsurpassed Persépolis.
Then came Avicenna, Omar Khayyam, and Rumi.
Shiraz brought forth the honored poets Hafiz and Sa’di.

Audacity, wisdom and aplomb sustained their laurels.
The ancient Persian glory was a feat beyond compare.
Yet rivalries wreaked havoc with their plotting and their snares.
On the heels of grandeur came foreseeable conclusion.
The mightiest of empires was reduced to an illusion.

But, God had other plans foretold by prophets long ago.
The day would come for Persia, singled out for special favor.
The Promised One would tread her soil, a native son, her savior.
She is the dayspring of His light in this new dispensation.
From which both earth and heaven will receive illumination.

Just when they might bring back the former glory of their nation,
The rulers turned upon their own, despotically repressive.
Intolerance and brutality would wax beyond excessive.
Ayatollah or Shah, they have disgraced their people’s honor.
How can Iran withstand it, all the shame that’s heaped upon her?

Through fire, sword and bullet, many thousands were to perish.
Their blood would drench the earth as they were hunted down like prey,
Yet these gazelles were willing game, refusing to take flight.
Sulaymán Khán you lit the candles sizzling in your flesh.
You lit our hearts forever, ardent lover of His light.

The episodes of slaughter are too many to recount.
At one time in Zanján , at another in Nayríz,
Causing consternation and incomparable grief.
Again in Tabarsí, they chose heroically to fight.
We wish our fire to equal yours, oh lovers of His light.

And then again the seven most distinguished of Teheran.
Their conduct was impeccable, their virtue undisputed.
Steadfastness in their faith, no power on earth could have uprooted.
Being publically beheaded was an honor, not their blight.
Our challenge is to match you, ardent lovers of His light.

The tyrant of the land of Yá, so ruthless his aspersion,
He caused the lambs to be dismembered, butchered by the mob.
That which he wrought would make the angels cry with tears of blood.
Their story written with this crimson ink by the Pen of Might
We weep for you as well, oh ardent lovers of His light.

The zealots came to rule the land with blind denunciation
Their reasoning distorted, their grasp of truth sclerotic
Good was renamed evil, their morality chaotic.
Ten women from Shiraz were hanged, denied all litigation.
Their heinous crime was being involved with children’s education.

We cherish your example, ardent lovers of His light,
Witnessing your bravery the gallows shook with fright.
Your courage and your confidence have left us all astounded.
The phoenix from the ashes is a myth they’ve long forgotten.
But justice will arise again to leave them all confounded.

Then those brave souls who disappeared, members of the Assembly.
And then again another nine who knew full well their fate,
Executed without trial, indictments based on hate.
These true heralds won’t be hushed by caveats of spite
. In service we will vie with you, Oh lovers of His light.

All our brothers and our sisters who continue to endure
The blows, abuse, taunts and curses of a spent regime.
Have shown us how the fire just augments their golden sheen.
Their unwavering devotion, lights up this darksome night.
We long to follow in your steps, Oh lovers of His light.

Now the Friends who led the way are languishing in cages.
No ray to lift the gloom, no breeze dispels the suffocation.
Where malice creeps into the cells with threats of violation.
Each morning a new martyrdom, assures new desolation.
So many years of misery beyond imagination.

Yet their thoughts are purified of all rancor and of hate.
Clemency is second nature, from their lips not one complaint.
We supplicate before His throne, to send down unto you
The sweet musk-laden winds of His mercy and delight.
We’ll speak out in your defense, oh lovers of His light

May the land of nightingales and roses rise again.
Let the bonds be loosened, let the captive ones go free.
May they walk in flowing robes of grace and ecstasy.
Let the stealthy desperados be disarmed of fang and claw.
We salute you, ardent lovers in the Land of Tá.